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Focal Elear - Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by grizzlybeast, Jun 21, 2016.
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  1. Imusicman
    I agree both are outstanding. I auditioned around a dozen or so top end cans today ranging from the new Ether C flows, Senn 800s, Mackintosh MOH100, EL8 Fostex, Hiifiman etc and it came down to these two for me. I must of switched back and forth between these two for nearly two hours with different tracks. In the end I opted for the Elear. It just ad the edge for me but it was very, very close and tbh had the Elear not been available for demo I would have bought the T1 2nd gen no question. I also agree they are a different sound but both excellent. My lesson learned today was by all means read and watch review but never underestimate the power of using your own ears.
  2. JLoud
    I purchased my Jot the Monday after they announced it.  So jumped on it early.  I ordered a cable from mimic-cables.  Came recommended by several people.  But so far horribly long wait.  It better make my Elears sing like the angels for how long I've waited, 6 weeks and counting.  I guess they had trouble getting parts, maybe for the connections to the headphone?
  3. nordkapp
    Congratulations on the Elear purchase. The T1.2 can be on your purchase list for 2017!
  4. Imusicman
    Burning them in now although they did sound great straight out of the box. I will definitely keep my eye out the T1's and buy them if I see them on a deal in 2017
    nordkapp likes this.
  5. james6333

    Not to start an argument (really not) but just to give the other side. I find the Elear very inaccurate to the recording, it has a very strong tuning (not to my liking).

    I own the Grado PS500e (smoothest Mids of the Grados IMO) and the Elear and I think the Grados are much more transparent to the recording and timbre. The Grados sound so much more real.

    The highs have about the same detail but the kicker is the highs are very shelved down on the Elear so those highs are hidden (and the PS500e is also rolled off!). The bass is better on the Elear though a little ripe.

    The sound stage is much better on the Elear. Based on what I wrote you would think I love the Elear but I went back to the Grados about a week after buying the Elear. The Grados Mids are so much better and that is where the music is.

    The Elear makes good "sounds" but as a collective whole it comes up very short from a transparent headphone with resessed upper Mids, over done bass, and very soft highs. Are they better at making sounds? Maybe. Are they better at making engaging music? For me not a change. I will take the Grados every time.

    Every once in a while I put the Elears on and spend about an hour with them (adjusting to the sound) and just as it think they sound good I put on my Grados and immediately they are so much more enjoyable.

    It is very hard for me to switch between my speaker rig and my Elears but I can switch almost seamlessly between my stereo and the Grados with the only real trade off being sound stage.
    Quinto likes this.
  6. MunDa
    Can anyone provide information on how the Elear compare to T5p 2 gen. eventhough one is open and the other closed.
  7. Imusicman
    MunDa likes this.
  8. chicken beer

    Yes. It will depend on music types. Elear is quite a balanced headphone which quite has a different sound signature from Grados (yes I'm implying that Grados are definately far from re-presenting music honestly, with a heavy tuning over the frequencies, especially 0.2k to 3k).
  9. james6333

    We will just have to agree to disagree as the Elear is down 3 db at 2k, 10db at 3k and 20db at 4K (reverence to 1k using Jude's graphs. If referenced from the highest bass peak it is down 25db. It is almost comical to call it balanced through the Mids.

    I have never seen measurments of the PS500e (only PS500 that is very different) but the PS line of Grados does not have the 2k peak of the lower Grado lines.

    Looking at the measurments I am sure people think it is crazy to compare old school Grados with their bad measurments to the latest and Greatest but my ears tell me we are not measuring the right things.

    At the end of the day both are very inaccurate but I also find the Elears to be dull and not enjoyable. I have to crank them to ear bleeding levels to get life out of them. While the tone of the Grados sounds very real to me.
  10. chicken beer

    Yeah. Grado are very musical. Like them too.
  11. lugnut
     You have me curious about the highs on the Elear, I don't want shelved/muted highs. I have no way to hear them without order and send them back, don't want to deal with that if I don't have to. You make reference to comparing them to your speakers, which looking at your info are Thiel. I am a long time speaker guy, and always found most Thiel Speakers tipped up a little on treble. I wonder if this is why you prefer the Grados ? Just trying to sort out the different opinions on these.
  12. james6333

    Yes this is a vary valid comment and references always matter.

    The Theils are tipped up about 2-3db but my room has some roll off (turned my entire ceiling into a trap $3000 later... (25' dedicated room), the bass is a lumpy mess though lol. Sort of fixed with my two JL subs. I also owned the B&W 803 (focal too), now that was a bright speaker.

    BUT the Grados are rolled off too. The PS500e is VERY different from other Grados. They are Grados with soft highs and no midrange peak, when I got them I had a hard time adjusting because the highs seemed soft on the PS500e (next to my speakers) but I got used to their relaxed highs and like them now. Now my speakers seem bright lol.

    Back to headphones:

    In back to back demos the PS500e is darker than the HD800S and brighter than the LCD2, almost right down the middle. Where the Elear is closer to the Audese LCD2 and darker/= the LCD-x (all back to back demos). The Elear's highs are soft enough that I have to stop and listen if I want to really hear the detail of the highs. They are detailed but off in the distance so to speak. The 10k peak is less of a peak and more of a neutral zone.

    One thing to keep in mind that really matters is listening volume. I listen pretty quiet (I like my hearing) and try to stay at 75-80db Max. And with the Elear I felt like they came alive at 85db+ which left my ears ringing. The same perceived "loudness" was sbout 75 on the grados.

    I believe a lot of people that are sensitive to bright systems tend to listen loud and those who hate dark system (like my self) listen quiet. Not absolute, just a general observation.

    But if you don't like your sound on the dark/soft side in the upper octaves you should demo the Elear first. If you don't think the Audeze are too dark the Elear should sound good to you.

    I bought my Elears unheard but if I had demoed them first I would have brought home the HD800S instead as an alternative to the Grados.
  13. nick97
    I had had enough of Giant stock cable with its quarter inch termination so I went out looking for a replacement and finally decided to just splurge on the nordost Blue Heaven cable and I absolutely love it it's extremely well-made looks great in its electric blue color and may have even refined the sound a little bit to my ears! Just thought I'd share this in case anyone's looking for a nice replacement cable
  14. BunnyNamedCraig
    I'm interested to hear if anyone has cut their cable in half and terminated it into a single ended and balanced cable. Anyone venture into that yet?
  15. Frode Roed
    Too bad Nordost doesn't make a balanced version, though.
    How did the BH fit the insert in the cans?
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